Chris Clark ’88, ’94 M.S. completed a bachelor’s and master’s degree in agricultural education at Ohio State. Following graduation, Clark became the agricultural education instructor for Madison Plains High School and later served as the school principal. He is now the superintendent for Black River School District, where he attended high school.
[ACEL]: Hi Chris! Why did you major in agricultural education?
[Clark]: I selected agriculture education as my major, after I completed agricultural education 200, which requried us to visit a school that offered agriculture education. After I had viewed the classes at the time which were taught at Wellington High School by Mrs. Whittington, I made the decision to major in agricultural education.
Why did you choose to attend The Ohio State University?
I wanted to obtain a college degree and I was the first member of my family to attend college. I also had some personal reasons to attend the Columbus campus.
How did your education at Ohio State influence your choice of career or your career path?
Agriculture education allowed me to have some diverse training and I was able to choose some classes that allowed me to be very diversified in agriculture. I have used many of the concepts and ideas as both an ag teacher and a school administrator.
What were you involved in as an Ohio State student?
I was involved in Alpha Zeta Fraternity, Agriculture Education Society and a college ambassador.
What classes did you enjoy the most while at Ohio State?
I really enjoyed all my classes, the most challenging was animal nutrition classes with Dr. Tyznick and animal science classes with Dr. Plimpton.
What professor, faculty or staff member had an impact on your education?
Dr. Jim Knight challenged me in my teaching methods classes. Had it not been for a lot of his comments and expectations, I would not have been able to survive my first year as a teacher.
What is your favorite memory related to your time at Ohio State?
My favorite memory is just the four years while I was obtaining my BS degree; whether it is in class or student organizations.
What was your first job following your education at Ohio State?
I was hired as the agriculture education instructor for Madison-Plains High School.
For what schools, companies and/or organizations have you worked throughout your career?
I was an agriculture education Instructor for the Madison-Plains Local Schools (16 years). I then became the high school principal for
Madison-Plains (10 years) and I am currently the superintendent of the Black River Local Schools.
During your career, have you received any awards or honors?
I was named the Outstanding Young Educator for OVATA (now OAAE). I also served as an officer in that organization.
As of today, what is your favorite career highlight?
My favorite career highlight was the growth of the students at Madison-Plains and all that we accomplished in the areas of Education and FFA.
What advice would you give to a current student?
Take advantage of all the education you can in college and accept failure and learn from it.
What did ACEL cultivate in you?
ACEL cultivated in me a firm desire to want to be successful. All the staff I worked with helped push me along. I have continued to push myself and the persons and students I work with to do as well as you can and accept challenges.